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Pay Matters



**Click here for full ballot result and new Branch Briefing (13 Nov)

Scottish local government members accept a two year pay deal

'UNISON is a democratic organisation; we have consulted all our members and respect their decision. The closeness of the result is a clear message to local authorities that staff are unhappy with the present pay offer.'

12 Nov 2008: UNISON members in Scotland’s councils have voted to accept a two year pay deal. Ballot papers were issued to nearly 100,000 UNISON members seeking their view of the latest local government pay offer by CoSLA of 3% for 2008 and 2.5% for 2009. The ballot covered members working for Scotland’s 32 local councils, local joint valuation boards and fire and rescue staff. In a very close result, UNISON members have voted by a narrow majority to accept the offer.

It is UNISON’s view that this is a poor offer, significantly below the present rate of inflation, despite the improvements to the previous offer which we were able to secure following two successful one day strikes. The strike action was successful thanks to the strong support of our members and tremendous work done locally by branches. The ballot result from the major union in local government indicates that the majority of members wish to resolve this dispute. UNISON is a democratic organisation; we have consulted all our members and respect their decision. The closeness of the result is a clear message to local authorities that staff are unhappy with the present pay offer.

Dougie BlackDougie Black, UNISON Regional Organiser and lead negotiator said:“This offer is not good but circumstances have led to our members drawing this dispute to a close. They have made a pragmatic decision based on the perilous state of Local Government finance, the unsettled wider economy and the fact that Christmas is almost upon us.”

Stepahnie HerdStephanie Herd, Chair of UNISON’s Local Government Committee added:
“It was clear from employers’ statements that they had become entrenched. In accepting this offer and improving our members’ basic pay until 2010, UNISON and the employers have the opportunity to look at ways of tackling low pay in local government without the backdrop of a dispute. This should be the start of constructive and meaningful discussions on pay for the future not simply the end of a hard fought bitter dispute.”


Previous news

Ballot on new offer starts for 100,000 Scottish Council staff - Papers out 22 Oct
"we will be telling our members that increased and longer strike action will be needed to deliver an offer that protects them" Dougie Black

BALLOT REQUEST FORM available from 28 Oct
Ballot papers were despatched on 22 October 2008 to all members working in Local Government in Scotland.

CLICK HERE for the form to request a new ballot paper if any of the following apply:
- you have not yet received your ballot paper
- you have lost your ballot paper
- your ballot paper is damaged or destroyed

NB - Cut off for Ballot Paper requests is noon on 7 November. Ballot closes on 12 November.




Previous News.....
10 Oct: UNISON to recommend rejection of new pay offer
5 Sept: UNISON Scotland set to step up strike action as councils fail to improve pay offer
22 Sept: Last month's council service disruption to be repeated on Wednesday
"The action on Wednesday will send a very clear message to the employers. Your failure to improve your offer after making public commitments to do so has angered your staff" Dougie Black
22 Sept: Councils put schoolchildren at risk in desperate attempt to undermine staff strike
New leaflets and posters for strike on 24 September
1 Sept: Further action inevitable following CoSLA failure to improve offer
22 Aug: Successful strike action brings reopening of talks
19 Aug: Scotland's local service providers to strike on 20 August
15 Aug: Scotland's local service providers to strike on 20 August
1 August: Scotland's local service providers vote 'Yes' to strike in pay row
31 July: Main local government union likely to announce vote for pay strike tomorrow
16 July: Local council strikes - resolve the dispute before they happen in Scotland

Reject posterVOTE NOW, Reject the Offer and Step up the Action Leaflet and poster
Leaflets and posters for strike on 24 september
Download and print these for local use. Numbers refer to Stock Number for ordering from London
Branch Secretaries' Briefing PDF Campaign Pack
Branches' Action Plan Word Document 1. CONTENTS PDF
Guide to Taking Strike Action PDF 2. CAMPAIGN GUIDE PDF
Strike Questions and Answers PDF 3. COMMUNICATION PDF
Guidance on Exemptions PDF 4. A BRIEFING FOR STEWARDS PDF
Pay Newsletter 5 PDF 5. MODEL PRESS RELEASE Word Document
Pay Newsletter 4 PDF 6. MODEL LETTER TO ELECTED MEMBERS Word Document
Model letter to Editors for Branches Word Document 7. MODEL LETTER TO MSPs Word Document
Model letter to Editors from members Word Document 8. POLITICAL LOBBYING PDF
VOTE YES - SAY NO TO LOW PAY LEAFLET PDF 10. Red Circles, OR - Why you should vote yes even if you are in detriment and ‘red circled’PDF.
Cost of Living Leaflet PDF  
Stewards Bulletin No 1 PDF  

Contacts for Assistance

Trade Union Side Secretary – Dougie Black d.black@unison.co.uk

Local Government Committee Secretary – Tracey Dalling t.dalling@unison.co.uk

Chair of Local Government Committee – Stephanie Herd unison32@btconnect.com

Political Lobbying – Dave Watson d.watson@unison.co.uk

Campaigning and Communications – Chris Bartter c.bartter@unison.co.uk

Local Government Support – Kevin O’Neil k.oneil@unison.co.uk


The Claim

The Scottish Joint Trade Unions have asked for:

  • A one year settlement
  • 5% or £1000 whichever is the greater
  • An additional 3 days annual leave
  • An additional public holiday

Our claim would make the bottom rate on SCP3 in local government £6.51 – a step towards the £6.75 which poverty experts say is the minimum needed to provide our lowest paid members with a living wage.

And the final offer from the employers was:

  • A 3 year settlement
  • 2008 – 2009 - 2.5%
  • 2009 – 2010 - 2.5%
  • 2010 - 2011 - 2.5%

What does the employers’ offer mean to me?

Someone on SCP3 with a current hourly rate of £5.99 stands to gain the princely sum of 46p after three years. We believe that the current offer from the employers does not meet our expectations, nor does it meet our claim. Neither do we believe that a 3 year deal is in your best interests given the current economic climate.

Let’s show the employers we mean business

The greatest asset within any local authority is the staff who deliver the services in a professional manner.

Without those staff local authorities would fail to meet the demands not only of local citizens but also of the council leaders and the government.